Mysterious monoliths, cryptic carvings… history is littered with the most fascinating finds and archaeologists have been trying to demystify some of them. Here are 11 such structures that continue to baffle the finest scientific minds even today.
- Automatic doors in Ancient Greece
Just the sound of ‘automatic’ doors from the 1st century BC is absolutely confounding. How on earth could people back then come with a mechanism so unique with zero technological advancement boggles the mind. The discovery, which has left scientists at a loss of words, was the genius Hero of Alexandria who invented automatic doors long before the 20th century.
- The Shroud Of Turin
Considered to be one of the most controversial artefacts, the Shroud of Turin is believed by many to be the burial cloth of Jesus. It is a rectangular linen cloth about 15 feet long and four feet wide that bears the image of a man’s body. While the Catholic Church does not officially recognise the shroud as authentic, many including Pope Benedict thinks it’s authentic.
- Vertical shower in Ancient Greece
Have you ever thought about what life would be like without a shower? Well, it’s a good time to thank the Greeks. Ancient Greeks had a form of plumbing installed in their homes, which helped lead to the invention of the shower. How they managed the complex piping system is a mystery.
- Leonardo da Vinci’s robot
Yes, it’s hard to believe, but robots did exist in the past. Leonardo da Vinci seemed to be way ahead of his time when he designed a robot for military action and the functional artefact discovered in the 1950s has left historians gobsmacked to say the least. The robot could imitate simple human movements, how cool is that!
- Ancient animal traps
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Strange kite-like lines on the deserts of Israel discovered by British RAF pilots led to one of a sensational discovery. Walls form large funnels direct gazelle and other large game animals into killing pits to make things easy for hunters.
- Nasca Lines
The mysterious lines found on the Nasca plateau in Peru were first spotted by commercial aircraft in the 1920s and 1930s. From geometric lines to complicated depictions of animals, plants and imaginary figures were made over 2,000 years ago by people of the pre-Inca Nazca culture.
According to historians, the lines were more likely to have been a ritual communication method with the Nazca’s deities, according to reports by Live Science.
- Gobekli Tepe
This discovery single-handedly befuddled historians, forcing them to rethink the evolution of civilisation. The building with rings of huge stone pillars was carved with scenes of animals dating to the 10th millennium B.C. Historian think the structure was built by were semi-nomadic hunters.
- Voynich manuscript
The manuscript was first found by an antique bookseller in 1912. The script has undeciphered lettering and is illustrated with a range of images, from female nudes to medicinal herbs and Zodiac signs. It dates back to Manuscript Library, dates back some 600 years back and historians think it’s written in an Asian language.
- The Hobbits
That’s right, the hobbits might have been real. In 2003, archaeologists dug out bones of the petite ancient hominin Homo floresiensis, hobbits in Indonesia. They first thought that it belonged to a human with microcephalia, but later discoveries of similarly sized skeletons suggested that the ‘Hobbit’ was an entirely separate sort of species.
- The Cochno Stone
Archaeologists in Glasgow, Scotland, excavated a 5,000-year-old stone slab called Cochno Stone. The slab considered to be an ancient form of artwork, is said to have information about astronomical phenomena, like eclipses.